A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Palladium Game System: How I Would Redo it! Part 4: Skills, Powers, and Talents

Im being lazy right now and thus my full on conversion will have to wait. And will mostly be here.

But call this a teaser and a placeholder.

Skills: Skills are used with an attribute check to do everything in the game. Levelling up gives you skill points, though there are certain powers and talents that give you more as well. You may have as many skills as you have Mental attribute points. (Though again, Talents and Powers can help this go higher.) An untrained skill check is a -5 or -10 depending on if its a Simple or Complex skill. (Again with modifiers any check of -11 or more is an automatic fail.) Complex skills are like Computer Programming, Robotics, and such. Simple Skills are like Firearms, Computer Operations, and Drive Civilian Vehicles.

As this is a generic framework system, it is up to GMs and players to determine what is complex or simple. If its something that even untrained a normal person could probably wiggle through doing its simple. If its something that generally needs a lot of training its complex. Obviously even complex can be tried, but outside of very favorable conditions it will most likely fail given our -11 is autofail rule. (Note a +11 does not exist. There is no auto pass. GMs may decide certain situations do not call for a roll and automatically say the check succeeds though. But if a player wants to roll and hope for a critical success they take the risk of rolling a 20 and failing. Or even more if their attribute and skill are low enough. (Normally you wouldn't need to roll to drive a car down the highway if you had even 1 point in Drive Civillian Vehicle and a 10 in your Physical or Mental attribute, but if you really want that critical success and are willing to deal with the potential for failing...)

Talents: Talents are mostly character based things that ignore classes. They can be racially based (Like an Elf may have Night Vision or Long Life.), or just a personal trait. Like Bruce Willis in Die Hard would have had the "Tough SOB" Talent. Characters have 2 of these starting out. Humans may select their two choices from a list, while other races have 1 or both preselected. At levels 5, 10, 15, and 20 characters get another Talent.

Power: Powers are CLASS BASED abilities similar to talents though set towards the class they chose. (Some Talents will allow selection of other classes' Powers allowing a form of multiclassing.) Powers can include being able to do special combat actions, use special equipment, or even learn multiple appropriate skills cheaper than normal. Characters get 2 of these at first level, then at levels 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, and 18 they get another one.

Combat Actions: Not really in the above, but as they are gained during level ups I will mention them here. As in combat, characters start with 2 actions at first level. At levels 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20 they get another one. If a character chooses, they may instead of getting another action, receive 1 additional power, and 5 skill points. (So a 20th level character could instead of having 7 combat actions could only have 2, but have 5 extra powers and 20 extra skill points.)

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